Stop Deceiving Nigerians On Fuel Subsidy

Stop Deceiving Nigerians On Fuel Subsidy

Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar has levelled serious accusations against President Bola Tinubu regarding the handling of the fuel subsidy issue.

In a strongly worded statement released on Wednesday in Abuja, Atiku claimed that the Tinubu administration is clandestinely continuing to fund fuel subsidies, despite public claims to the contrary.

According to Atiku, who contested the 2023 Presidential election under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the government is expected to spend up to ₦5.4 trillion on subsidies for Premium Motor Spirit (petrol) in 2024 alone.

This assertion starkly contrasts with President Tinubu’s public stance, which suggests that his administration has ceased all subsidy payments.

“The Tinubu administration must stop deceiving Nigerians and be transparent about its policies,” Atiku remarked.

He urged the President to align his administration’s public statements with its actions, especially on issues as critical as fuel subsidy that directly impact the economic well-being of the populace.

This development comes as the Nigerian government faces intense scrutiny over its economic policies amid rising costs of living and ongoing debates around subsidy removal.

Atiku said, “President Bola Tinubu, at his inauguration on May 29, 2023, announced the abolishment of the subsidy on PMS, popularly known as fuel.

“Ever since, it has been a bragging right of Tinubu and officials of his administration.

“I had in my statement reviewing the one year of the Bola Tinubu administration urged the government to come clean on the actual position of the subsidy policy.

“These were my exact words: “…provide clarity on the fuel subsidy regime, including the fiscal commitments and benefits from the fuel subsidy reform and the impact of this on the Federation Accounts.

“It is curious that since April 2024, fuel queues have mounted at many filling stations across Nigeria, and the infamous ‘black market’ has sprouted in several states.

“How much PMS is being imported and distributed, and at what cost? What is the implicit subsidy?”

“If the subsidy regime had been characterised by opaqueness, what would we say of a situation where the subsidy is still being paid under the cover without Nigerians in the know?

“Like millions of Nigerians, I was shocked to learn through media reports that the “government is still supporting downstream consumption.

“Now we know that expenditure on fuel subsidy may reach N5.4 trillion in 2024, compared to the N3.6 trillion spent in 2023, the same year that Tinubu claimed to have abolished fuel subsidy

“I wish to restate that Nigeria is not working, and what we have had in a little over a year is a cocktail of trial-and-error economic policies. Paying subsidies and lying about it is nothing to brag about. Nigerians deserve better than this deception.”

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